Thanksgiving Recipes From Emeril Lagasse

Still looking for the perfect dishes for Thanksgiving Day? Emeril Lagasse shared his Thanksgiving menu on Good Morning America today.

Check out his recipes for Beer-Brined Turkey with Turkey Giblet Gravy, Bacon Smothered Haricots Verts, Bourbon Mashed Sweet Potatoes, Tasso and Cornbread Stuffing and Mr. Lou's Chocolate-Praline Pie with Sweetened Whipped Cream.

If you would like to print this page, please choose the "print this story" option at the top right corner of this page.

Beer-Brined Turkey with Turkey Giblet Gravy

• 2 quarts apple cider • 2 cups packed dark brown sugar • 2 cups kosher salt • 1/4 cup black peppercorns • 1 tablespoon juniper berries • 4 bay leaves • Two 3-inch cinnamon sticks • 1 teaspoon whole cloves • 4 quarts dark beer • One 8- to 10-pound turkey, neck and giblets reserved for gravy • 3 cups chopped yellow onions • 1 1/2 cups chopped celery • 1 1/2 cups chopped carrots • 6 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) plus 1 tablespoon unsalted butter • 2 tablespoons Emeril's Original Essence (recipe below) • 4 cups chicken stock • 1 tablespoon olive oil • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour • 1/2 cup dry white wine • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage

Emeril's Original Essence

• 2 1/2 tbsp. sweet paprika • 2 tbsp. salt • 2 tbsp. garlic powder • 1 tbsp. black pepper • 1 tbsp. onion powder • 1 tbsp. Cayenne • 1 tbsp. dried oregano • 1 tbsp. dried thyme

Mix all of the ingredients together and store in an airtight container. Can be stored for up to 3 months. Note: This recipe makes about 3/4 cup. Combine the apple cider, brown sugar, salt, peppercorns, juniper berries, bay leaves, cinnamon, and cloves in a large pot or bowl. Stir to dissolve the sugar and salt. Combine the mixture with the beer in a 40-quart cooler, or large plastic container. Place the turkey in the brine and, if necessary, weigh down with heavy dinner plates to completely submerge. Cover with plastic and refrigerate for 24 hours.

Spread the onions, celery, carrots, and garlic in the bottom of a large roasting pan. Add the turkey neck to the bottom of the pan. Preheat the oven to 400° F.

Remove the turkey from the brine and rinse well under cold running water. Pat dry with paper towels and place on top of the vegetables in the roasting pan.

Combine 1 stick of the butter and the Essence in a small pan and melt over medium heat. Remove from the heat. With a pastry brush, baste the top and sides of the turkey with half of the butter. Roast for 30 minutes.

Baste the turkey with the remaining seasoned butter, reduce the oven temperature to 300° F. and roast for 30 minutes.

Baste the turkey with 1/2 cup of the chicken stock. Return to the oven and roast until golden and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh registers 160° F, 1 1/2 to 2 hours longer, basting once with 1/2 cup of the chicken stock.

Remove the turkey from the oven and transfer to a platter or cutting board. Tent with foil and let rest for 15 minutes before carving.

Melt the remaining tablespoon butter with the olive oil in a medium heavy pot over medium-high heat. Add the reserved giblets and cooked turkey neck, and cook, stirring, until browned, 2 to 3 minutes. Add half of the vegetables from the roasting pan and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the white wine and stir to deglaze the pan. Add the remaining 3 cups chicken stock and any juices accumulated in the roasting pan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, add the sage, and simmer briskly until reduced by half, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and discard the neck.

In batches, pulse the liquid and solids in a food processor into a thick liquid. Strain through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl, pressing against the solids with a spoon to extract as much liquid as possible and transfer to a gravy boat. Adjust the seasoning to taste.

To serve, carve the turkey and serve with the gravy.

Bacon Smothered Haricots Verts

• 1 1/2 pounds haricots verts, or small, thin green beans, ends trimmed • 1/2 pound bacon, chopped • 1 cup minced shallots • 1 teaspoon minced garlic • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour • 1 cup Chicken Stock (can be homemade or store bought stock or broth) • 1 teaspoon salt • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper • 1/2 teaspoon sherry wine vinegar

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the beans and cook until tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain in a colander and transfer to an ice bath. Drain well.

Fry the bacon in a large skillet and cook, stirring, over medium-high heat until crisp and golden, 5 minutes. Add the shallots and garlic, and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes. Add the stock, salt, pepper, and vinegar, and cook, stirring, until thickened, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the green beans and cook until warmed through, about 2 minutes.

Remove from the heat and serve. Makes 4 servings

Bourbon Mashed Sweet Potatoes

• 1 3/4 to 2 pounds sweet potatoes • 1 teaspoon olive oil • 1/2 cup heavy cream • 1/4 cup bourbon whiskey • 3 tablespoons packed light brown sugar • 2 tablespoons molasses • 1/8 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 350° F.

Place the potatoes on a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake until tender and starting to ooze sugary syrup, about 1 hour and 15 minutes, depending upon their size. Remove from the oven and let sit until cool enough to handle.

Cut a slit down each potato and scoop the flesh into a large bowl. Discard the skins. Add the cream, bourbon, brown sugar, molasses, and salt and beat on high speed with an electric mixer until smooth.

Cover to keep warm, or gently reheat before serving. Makes 4 cups

Tasso and Cornbread Stuffing

• 1 tablespoon unsalted butter • 3 tablespoons olive oil • 4 ounces tasso, finely chopped • 1 cup chopped yellow onions • 1/2 cup chopped green bell peppers • 1/2 chopped celery • 1 tablespoon minced garlic • 6 cups crumbled prepared cornbread • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme • 2 cups chicken stock, or low-sodium chicken broth • 1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper

Preheat oven to 375º F. Butter a 9-inch square baking pan with the butter and set aside.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the tasso and cook until browned, about 3 minutes. Add the onions, bell peppers, and celery and cook, stirring, until soft, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the cornbread, parsley, sage, thyme, and stir well to blend. Add the chicken stock and stir well, cooking for 1 minute.

Remove from the heat, add the Worcestershire, salt, and pepper and mix well. Turn out the mixture into the prepared pan and bake until warmed through and golden brown on top, 25 to 30 minutes. Serve hot. Yield: 6 to 8 servings

Mr. Lou's Chocolate-Praline Pie with Sweetened Whipped Cream

• 2 cups heavy cream • 1/4 cup cornstarch, sifted • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar • 1/2 cup Steen's 100 percent Pure Cane Syrup • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate, melted • 1 cup crumbled Crunchy Pralines (recipe below) • One 9-inch Chocolate Graham Cracker Crust, baked and chilled • 1 cup heavy cream • 1 tablespoon confectioners sugar

In a large saucepan, combine the cream, cornstarch, brown sugar, and cane syrup. Cook over medium-high heat, whisking, until a slightly thick custard forms, 10 to 12 minutes. Stir in the chocolate and mix well.

Remove from the heat and place a piece of waxed paper directly on top of the custard to prevent a film from forming and let cool.

Fold half of the crumbled pralines (recipe below) into the cooled custard, and then pour the mixture into the prepared shell. Sprinkle the remaining pralines on top. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.

In a medium bowl, beat the cream until thick and frothy. While beating, add the sugar and beat until soft peaks form.

To serve, slice the pie into servings and top each with the sweetened whipped cream. Yield: Makes one 9-inch pie, about 8 servings

Crunchy Pralines • 1 pound light brown sugar (about 2 1/2 packed cups) • 2 tablespoons butter • 1/4 cup water • 2 cups pecan pieces

Line a large baking sheet with wax paper and set aside. In a large saucepan, combine the brown sugar, butter, and water and cook over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar, for 3 to 4 minutes. When the mixture begins to boil, add the pecans and continue to stir for about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and drop by the spoonful onto the wax paper. Let cool and harden. Peel from the paper, using a thin knife as necessary. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks. Yield: about 2 dozen

Chocolate Graham Cracker Crust

• 1 cup graham cracker crumbs • 3/4 cup finely ground Oreo cookies (chocolate cookies only, cream stuffing removed) • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted • 2 tablespoons sugar • 1 egg white, beaten

Preheat the oven to 375° F. In a large bowl, combine the graham cracker and cookie crumbs, butter, and sugar and blend with a mixer or by hand. Transfer to a 9-inch pie pan, pressing firmly into the bottom and up the sides with your fingers. Place another 9-inch pie pan on top of the crust and press firmly to smooth and pack the crust. (Some of the crust may spill over the edges of the pan.)

Remove the second pan and bake until the crust is golden, 10 to 15 minutes.

Cool completely on a wire rack. Brush the crust with the egg white to seal. Refrigerate, tightly covered, for one hour before using, or freeze for up to six weeks. Yield: Makes one 9-inch crust.

Recipes courtesy of Emeril Lagasse, copyright © 2003.